There are as many L.A. stories as there are Angelenos - here are just a few of them.
Through a series of interconnected short stories, Mosley tells the story of Socrates Fortlow, an ex-convict with plenty of demons to wrestle, struggling to bring justice to his Los Angeles neighborhood.
In an affluent Los Angeles community, a Mexican live-in maid, Araceli, discovers that her employers are gone, and she is left in a sprawling house with the owners' two little boys. So begins an adventure in today's Los Angeles, as Araceli takes the two children on a search for their grandfather Señor Torres.
First in the author's very popular series about maverick LAPD detective Harry Bosch.
Frida and Cal left the crumbling city of Los Angeles and set out on their own, building a home out of the refuse of others’ dross in Northern California.When Frida becomes pregnant, she and Cal set out for the nearest settlement—a place guarded by its own community’s secrets. Intricately-plotted and suspenseful, this Dystopian fiction asks us to question just how far we will go to protect those we love.
Viciously panned by the Los Angeles Times upon its publication in 1963, Rechy's groundbreaking novel about the gay underground scene during the 1960s is now widely considered a classic.
West's novel about the bottom feeders, has-beens and hangers-on of the Hollywood studio system was a flop when it was first published in 1939 but has since gone on to become, along with The Last Tycoon, the epitome of the Hollywood novel. Coincidently, Nathanael West died in an automobile accident on December 22, 1940, one day after the death of F. Scott Fitzgerald.
Los Angeles noir from a woman's point of view—this tale of betrayal and corruption smolders.
A strange and singular book that captures the excess, entitlement, Cold War anxiety, and New Age rhetoric of Los Angeles in the 70s and 80s.
Henry Chinaski grows up on the mean streets of Los Angeles, and embraces a life of horse-racing, liquor, and poetry in Bukowski's semi-autobiographical novel.
Pynchon has created a fast-paced tale with Doc Sportello, private investigator, off on one wild investigation leading into another. Set in the drug-hazed world of southern California in the early seventies, this work is one rollicking story and a vehicle for satirizing the foibles of modern life.
Former OSS spy Lily Kessler combs the streets of Los Angeles for a missing starlet, and finds more than she bargained for. Loosely based on the real-life disappearance of aspiring actress Jean Spangler, the book includes stellar period detail, an exploration of women's roles in postwar Los Angeles, and a cameo by a young Ray Bradbury!
Hard-boiled sleuth Philip Marlowe is in trouble with the police after he helps a suspected murderer flee the country, but his troubles don't end there.
The year is 1963. Martin Luther King, Jr. is about to hold his Freedom Rally at Wrigley Field in Los Angeles; William H. Parker is Chief of the Los Angeles Police Department; John F. Kennedy is President of the United States; Pat Brown is the Governor of California; Gas is $0.29 a gallon and ground beef is less than $0.50 a pound. Harry Ingram is a freelance news photographer in Los Angeles. He also works side-jobs serving legal papers. Harry recently reconnected with an old friend, and fellow Korean War vet, Ben Kinslow. This is a top notch mystery/thriller, providing a window to the past that clearly illustrates, simultaneously, how much things have changed and how much they remain the same in the city of Los Angeles.
The ravages of being an actress in Hollywood are brutally depicted in this novel that also captures a time period, the 1960s.
"The book’s central focus is exploring the work of both contemporary and long-departed writers who made Los Angeles a central character within their stories."
Crais continues his Joe Pike series and delves into the mindset and past of this man of mystery, former LAPD officer and currently a private investigator. Joe encounters two Hurricane Katrina refugees in Venice, California who are being menaced by a local street gang. Joe moves to protect the duo but they are not exactly what they seem to be. Snappy dialogue and a quick narrative pace move the story along. This is a good beach read.
Nina Revoyr admirably captures the idiosyncrasies of Los Angeles and its history through the character of Rick Nagano, a USC graduate student, whose desirable job has unforeseen drawbacks. While working for Mrs. W., matriarchal heir to an oil fortune, he has access to her personal journals and files that reveal an unknown history of the city. While assisting Fiona Morgan, a young socialite, Nagano learns more about the history of Los Angeles, which is interesting, but also proves to be more damaging to everyone.
Nobel-winning German novelist Thomas Mann spent a decade in Los Angeles during and after World War II. This is a look at Mann and the circle of fellow exiles he socialized with, including writers, artists, and musicians including Igor Stravinsky, Arnold Schoenberg, Lion Feuchtwanger, and Franz Werfel.
Anna Deavere Smith has chronicled modern American social issues in a unique format in plays that use verbatim interviews from people who were involved in major events. She did the same in this play which follows the aftermath of the 1992 Los Angeles riots following the acquittal of police officers who beat Rodney King.
A black "surfer dude" teen from Santa Monica is moved to urban Los Angeles, where he becomes a basketball star in this irreverent look at African-American history and culture.
Vikar, obsessed with movies and fleeing his strict Calvinist upbringing in Pennsylvania, arrives in Los Angeles on the day of the Tate-LaBianca murders. With a tattoo of Montgomery Clift and Elizabeth Taylor in A Place in the Sun tattooed on his shaved head he wanders through Hollywood of the 1970s and eventually uncovers a dark secret of the movies. David Lynch meets Easy Riders, Raging Bulls.